Last month, the Responsible Gambling Council launched its newest awareness campaign, which main objective is to teach individuals how to safely enjoy wagering. The name of the new initiative is “Mindfulness Before Gambling”, and its focus will be on Ontario gamblers, and teach them the importance of having a plan before committing to gambling.
This campaign comes at a great time when the country is reporting a boom of online wagering after the legalization of single-game betting with the passage of Bill C-218, and the upcoming open iGaming market of Ontario in the upcoming months. Recently, the province has even closed down all of its land-based casino properties, leaving fans with the option of only playing online.
“Mindfulness Before Gambling”, will be targeting Ontario residents between the age of 35 to 55. It started in December 2021, and it will continue to mid-February this year. Its message is being displayed by video ads on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and theScore app, in addition to audio ads on Spotify. It also has a website called PlanBeforeYouPlay.ca
According to a study conducted on 5,000 Canadian gamblers, only half of the examined would stop gambling if they felt any sort of intoxication. The research found that gamblers aged 18 to 24 are significantly more likely to endorse false gambling beliefs, such as awaiting random outcomes to occur if they have not for a while, wagering to compensate losses, and believing in certain pattern play for better chances of winning.
In its campaign, the council uses three 15-second video spots that utilize symbols of mindfulness apps. The videos feature a relaxing voiceover, which is combined with soothing music and visuals, and address certain aspects of gambling-related issues. It mentions the use of alcohol or drugs while wagering, the appeal of a big game, and the lucky feeling on special occasions.
Each video comes with a voiceover that explains in a humorous way of the implications of such thoughts and actions. Also, it warns people of the dangers of consuming alcohol or drugs before the start of wagering activities, as it can influence one’s judgment. The video also warns people about the cases of feeling lucky, as it explains that all feelings are valid while gambling except for luck.
Previous campaigns by the Responsible Gambling Council include its joint initiative with the All-In Diversity Project. Their common goal was to provide a better understanding of diversity and inclusivity in the gaming sector. The All-In Diversity Project’s task was to educate gaming brands in the industry and help them not only with working tools for diversification of the workforce but also by taking action in the right direction.
Digitalization of the Field
Back in November 2021, Credit Canada reported that there has been a rise of online gamblers in the country during the lockdown restrictions. Counselors from the organization stated that more and more residents blame to full or to a degree online wagering for their financial misfortune while seeking advice from professional financial advisors. This is due to having easier access to online wagers.
Source: Powell, Chris “Responsible Gambling Council urges Ontarians to practice gambling ‘mindfulness’”, The Message, January 4, 2022